1st Aug 2013 4:56pm | By Dan Thorne
A lengthy scientific project to create the world's first synthetic beef burger will result in the scoffing of a meaty patty worth quarter of a million pounds in London.
The 5oz burger, which will be made up of 3,000 strips of synthetically created laboratory meat grown in a lab from stem cells.
The burger will be ceremoniously consumed in an undisclosed west London venue next week in front of members of the public invited along to marvel at the munching of the unusual and ground-breaking meaty creation.
"Eventually, my vision is that you have a limited herd of donor animals which you keep in stock in the world," Professor Mark Post told The Independent.
"You basically kill animals and take all the stem cells from them, so you would still need animals for this technology."
Post said that his reasons for creating the fake meat was rooted in concerns for sustainability and environmental impact. "Livestock contributes a lot to greenhouse gas emissions, more so than our entire transport system."
Each of the tiny strips of beef that make up the patty are the size of a rice grain.
"In vitro or cultured meat is not yet commercially viable, but the technology used to produce cultured meat could be advanced enough for trials to take place," said a spokeswoman for The Food Standards Agency.
American animal welfare organisation PETA is offering a reward of $1m US to anyone able to prove they can create artificial chicken meat.
Update 5/8/13: The burger was eaten by volunteers Hanni Rutzler and Josh Schonwald.
"I was expecting the texture to be more soft. But there is quite a bit of flavor," said Rutzler, according to The Verge.
See a series of photos tweeted live from the event below...
Main image via Thinkstock